From the Headmaster:

Well, quite a week. Again!

Two years in the making including the publication of an iBook that reminded me of my dissertation (fond memories for all of us involved in its composition right at the end of last term) and 550+ hours of CPD and training.

The whole motive behind deploying the technology across the school was simply to raise standards of pupil progress and achievement. Teachers using the devices to enhance the quality of teaching and learning and allowing the children to be creative in ways that would not otherwise be possible. We have seen the remarkable rise in progress and achievement since their introduction across the school. As you will see from our iBook that explains the whole process, the spike in the respective charts and graphs are a statisticians dream....

The link to the iBook will be sent to you all as soon as it is loaded. It is quite a read and highly interactive.

We now become a centre of excellence for our (pupils and teachers) use of technology and will be presenting at a national conference in November and again in January 2019, sharing our experience and demonstrating just how it has transformed learning and enhanced creative thinking.

What is so pleasing about this award is that it is very much a whole school achievement. The numerous learning walks by Apple Education representatives and gathering of evidence involved every class and every teacher; befitting our ethos and mission.

We become just the sixth independent school with this distinction, joining Millfield School, Bedford Girls, Tormead, Caterham and Royal Grammar School Worcester as schools that Apple regard as -

Apple Distinguished Schools are centres of leadership and educational excellence ​that demonstrate Apple’s vision for learning with technology — and we believe they are some of the most innovative schools in the world.

Not a bad way to start the weekend.

Yours sincerely,


PS - well done to the girls football team who beat Clarence House on Monday 5-4 and good luck to the boys who take on Broomfield House on Wednesday!

PPS - Term dates for 2019-2020 are below (2020!)

There are also some wonderful images from our Little Adventurers available through their own instagram page -

The Gallery

Second Steps enjoying Woodlands School at Richmond Park.

Alpkit Foundation Award

In recognition of our 'learning outside of the classroom' with Woodlands School and Adventure School, I am delighted to inform you that we have received a grant from the outdoor clothing company Alpkit.

We are keen to enable our children to experience the wonderful experience of bikepacking, essentially backpacking but on a bike. You carry your equipment, tents, stove, clothes and sleeping bag on bags attached to the saddle, frame and handlebar. Being somewhat of a enthusiastic bikepacker myself, it is an exciting addition to the adventure school curriculum.


Now. May I ask for your help?

During the assembly on Thursday, we spoke about the values and morals that make our school. We spoke about perseverance and resilience, respect and tolerance. We spoke about the importance of happiness and encouragement. We also discussed the following verse from 'If' by Rudyard Kipling -

We had a wonderful discussion about how we can describe our school, drawing upon a variety of descriptions and examples from other schools -

The children immediately started volunteering some superb descriptions and mottos for our school. With the school approaching quite a significant milestone next academic year, our 70th anniversary (1949-2019) as well as our Year 6 children potentially reaching the conclusion to their time at Park Hill, we all agreed that the time has come for us to agree upon a school motto.

The plan is to form a small committee of school councillors, staff and parents to shortlist five of the best suggestions and that put it to a vote. The prize? As well as the honour of giving us a much needed motto, Amazon vouchers will be yours (adult or child) to enjoy. Please do take part and click on the following link to start the creative process -

News from Year 5 and Year 4

Shapes has been our main theme this week as we have been drawing and analysing properties of them in our maths lessons, whilst reading poetry on circles and holes considering their use and occurrence in everyday life. In addition we have also been looking at rectangles throughout the school: writing poetic sentences using expanded noun phrases and finding comparisons using metaphors, similes and personification.

For our final week we return to place value in maths looking at mental methods for multiplication and division. We will use our knowledge of times tables facts to help find: common multiples, sort using Venn diagrams; find factor of two-digit numbers; divide mentally, deciding whether to round up or down depending on the context.

Our observations in English lessons from around the school will culminate in writing poetry which pupils shall present to the rest of the class. We aim to create artworks inspired by objects and places and art from the old masters to contemporary art; that will be the catalyst for expressive writing using key features observed in poetry that we have been reading.

In other subjects we conclude our studies on the Aztecs by completing our BookCreator presentations and learning about the city of Tenochtitlan and the Spanish conquistadors. Our science investigations in to brains continues too. Pupils test their brain abilities using their own variables in self designed experiments and investigations.

Don't forget - Tuesday - Games kit; Wednesday - Swimming kit; Thursday - Inter-house Spelling Competition; Friday - Flu Immunisations for Reception - Year 5; Friday - School Council Bake Sale.

News from Year 3

Year 3 have had another action packed week. In Mathematics we have enjoyed learning about fractions and in particular fractions of number, of course we needed Cadbury’s fingers to help consolidate learning!

In English we have been further exploring our character Saeed from Julia Johnson’s The Pearl Diver. We have looked at how his character has developed as the story has progressed. From being shy and worried about his first pearl diving trip, to having confidence with support of his father to jump in and discover the ways of the sea. After much group discussion we came up with a variety of thoughts and feelings he experiences which we are now writing about.

In art we enjoyed completing our Roman shields and experimenting making the ‘testudo’ or tortoise as a group to see if we could protect ourselves in an invasion.

Don't forget - Tuesday - Games kit; Wednesday - Swimming kit; Thursday - Inter-house Spelling Competition; Friday - Flu Immunisations for Reception - Year 5; Friday - School Council Bake Sale.

News from Year 2

This week, the children have been working on time and telling the time. We have created our own clocks and have been learning to tell the time to 15 minutes, and then 5 minutes. We have really enjoyed creating these clocks, adding minutes, and words to edge to help us.

In English, we have completed our work on poetry by Spike Milligan, creating a poem that tells a story. We have had inanimate objects walking and talking, saving the world, and animals making friends all as poems.

In Science, the children have created brand new species to fit a particular role within a food chain. They had to consider features, type of animal (apex predator, herbivore, carnivore, consumers etc). They are so good that they now adorn our wall.

Don't forget - Tuesday - Games kit; Wednesday - Swimming kit; Thursday - Inter-house Spelling Competition; Friday - Flu Immunisations for Reception - Year 5; Friday - School Council Bake Sale.

News from Year 1

At Park Hill we seek to teach the children mastery of a subject - number sense and place value underpins everything mathematical. This week we have been building of knowledge of number facts, problem solving and reasoning. We investigated numbers to find out all the different combinations - how many parts can we split the whole number into. Then we looked at fact families using three numbers to write addition and subtraction facts.

Language development is a key aspect of maths. The way children speak and write about mathematics has been shown to have an impact on their success. We have been developing our understanding of the language of addition and subtraction during mental maths tests.

At Woodland school we developed our listening skills and understanding of direction by creating sound maps of the area. The children had to listen exceptionally carefully to identify every sound and record using a map symbol of their devising. We were fortunate to hear the local deer vocalising - the bellowing call reminded Matilda of something much less familiar ...

“It sounds like a dinosaur”.

In Literacy the we produced some wonderful work building on their newly acquired knowledge of adjectives. Our writing stimulus was ‘Knock Knock who’s there?’ by Sally Gringley with illustrations by Anthony Browne where each time there is a knock at the door there is a different monster strangely wearing tartan slippers!

We created our own strange visitors and descriptions which have been combined to make a class book - If you are able please do stop by and read their wonderful work.

Don’t forget!

Thursday 18th October Inter house Spelling Bee 8.40-9.30

Please join us to support your children - there may be a part of the competition for parents to participate!

Don't forget - Tuesday - Games kit; Wednesday - Swimming kit; Thursday - Inter-house Spelling Competition; Friday - Flu Immunisations for Reception - Year 5; Friday - School Council Bake Sale.

News from Reception

This week Reception has taken full pride in their roles and responsibilities around the classroom. The children have taken it in turns being snack, book, stationery and door monitors to keep the classroom tidy and unformed which is very pleasing to see. Thank you. In maths, the children focused on 3D shapes looking at sphere, cube, cylinder and cone matching objects in the environment. At Woodland school, the children looked at animals and habitats and made their own cone animals using a range of textiles, arts and crafts. Bats, spiders, sharks, bears and snakes were some superb creations. The children participated in the chilli challenge this week which involved looking at the manipulation of materials. Please take a look at Tapestry to see the children persevering and persisting with the challenge. Well done.

Gentle reminder to all parents: Please can you bring your child into school wearing their Sports kit and full waterproofs/wellies every Wednesday morning ready for Woodland School. Thank you.

Don't forget - Tuesday - Games kit; Wednesday - Look Out Discovery Centre; Thursday - Inter-house Spelling Competition; Friday - Flu Immunisations for Reception - Year 5; Friday - School Council Bake Sale.

News from Second Steps

This week Second Steps have had a very creative week. We did some fabulous birthday baking for Aiden’’s 4th birthday. The children go to weigh out the ingredients and even got to continue to exploring their sense of taste, by tasting different ingredients. In Maths we have been looking at weighing different objects and explaining which is higher and lighter.

This weeks fine motor finger gym was all about getting messy. We hid different objects inside different coloured shaving foam and the children had to use the tweezers, spoons and their fingers to find them within fluffy mound. Bea “I just love the colours”.

What a fun and adventurous time we had at woodlands school. We used our senes to explore the environment, fine motor skills and gross motor skills. We used a pan to create some mud cakes. First we had to dig up some soil and place it in the saucepan. Then we poured in the water and stirred it into the soil. Once this was done we had our cup cake holders and placed the mud cake mix into them. We pretended the logs were oven and we baked our mud cakes for a little while. We then decorated our mud cakes with flowers and other items we found during woodland school. Absolutely amazing work by all the children!

As a reminder ‘Show and Tell’ sessions are on Friday. This is when your child can bring in a toy or picture to show the rest of the class. For the rest of the week please can we encourage children not to bring toys from home as we have had a few go missing. Please ensure all belongs including ‘Show and Tell’ items are clearly labelled as this makes it far easier to find missing items.

News from First Steps

What a fun we had in Woodland School this week. The children did bark rubbing with chalk then we discussed the differences between the surfaces. Ms A showed children how to jump high and forward after walking like a cat and skittering like a snake on the floor. The children used their imagination to decorate their photos using app Piccollage. Dinosaurs have visited us at our outdoor area and children developed their language while playing with them. We continued to discover sinking and floating extending conkers and grass. The children experimented mixing their favourite colours while doing sponge printing.

Tapestry - we have added so many lovely learning observations of your child while in nursery. Please make sure to login as we add them weekly. Thank you!

Key Dates for the first few weeks:

Wednesday 17th October - Second Steps and Reception trip to The Look Out Discovery Centre

Wednesday 17th October - Boys football match vs Broomfield House School (away)

Thursday 18th October - Inter-house Spelling Competition

Friday 19th October - Flu Immunisations for Reception - Year 5

Friday 19th October - School Council Bake Sale

Friday 19th October - Half term holiday school closed (6pm)

Created By
Park Hill


Alistair Bond

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